Hospital Employees' Union

Hospital Employees' Union

April 09, 2009 11:51 ET

Health care workers rally in Vancouver for clean,safe hospitals

April 9 at 4 p.m. (Pattison Pavillion, VGH) Labour, church and community leaders rally for decent jobs for hospital cleaners and dietary workers employed by health authority contractors

Attention: Assignment Editor, Health/Medical Editor, Media Editor, News Editor, Government/Political Affairs Editor VANCOUVER/MEDIA ADVISORY--(Marketwire - April 9, 2009) - Just one day after returning strong results in strike votes around the Lower Mainland and Fraser Valley, hospital housekeepers and dietary workers will hold a rally in support of their campaign for improved wages, benefits and working conditions.

The workers and their allies are calling on government and health authorities to take responsibility and ensure their contractors - Sodexo, Aramark and Compass - provide working conditions that are critical to clean, safe hospitals.

What: Rally and March in support of hospital cleaning and dietary staff
When: Thursday, April 9 at 4 p.m.
Speakers begin at 4:15 p.m.
Where: Pattison Pavillion, Vancouver General Hospital, 12th and Laurel followed by march to Vancouver Coastal Health executive offices (601 W. Broadway @ Ash)
Who: Judy Darcy, HEU secretary-business manager (4:15 p.m. at Pattison Pavillion)
Labour, church and community leaders
Front-line workers
Opposition health critic Adrian Dix

Approximately 3500 hospital workers in the Lower Mainland, Sunshine Coast and on Southern Vancouver Island are bargaining new contracts with government contractors Sodexo, Aramark and Compass.

Currently, most hospital workers employed by the contractors earn $13.05 an hour, with only six sick days per year, and no pension plan. Many also have no benefits at all because they are either ineligible or unable to afford the 50 per cent premium cost-sharing.

The contractors have rejected the union's proposals related to living wages, sick days, workload, training and staffing levels - issues that are essential for clean and safe hospitals.

The Hospital Employees' Union has now received strong strike mandates from workers at all sites to back its bargaining teams. The union is still at the Labour Relations Board with the employers setting essential services levels.
/For further information: www.heu.org/ IN: ECONOMY, HEALTH, LABOUR, POLITICS

Contact Information

  • Olive Dempsey, Communications Officer, HEU
    Primary Phone: 604-816-3917
    Secondary Phone: 604-438-5000 ext. 7084
    Toll-Free: 800-663-5813
    E-mail: odempsey@heu.org